Children and Young People

Policies and Codes of Conduct

DHS recognises children and young people are valued citizens and that the future of South Australia is linked to their wellbeing. It is vital to South Australia that all children and young people have the chance to thrive.

We want each child and young person to:

  • be safe from harm
  • do well at all levels of learning and to have skills for life
  • enjoy a healthy lifestyle
  • be active citizens who have a voice and influence.

These outcomes are set out in the Children and Young People (Safety) Act 2017.

Every person in South Australia must protect and promote these outcomes for children and young people.

DHS supports children and young people to feel:

  • safe
  • valued
  • respected, and
  • encouraged to reach their individual potential.

DHS powers and responsibilities

The department has certain powers and responsibilities around the safety and wellbeing of children and young people. We take these powers seriously and will provide early intervention when there is a risk that children and young people will be harmed.

DHS is a key partner in the South Australian Government’s Child and Family Support System (CFSS) reform activities.

We educate our staff

We continue to develop a culture in the department where the protection and support of children and young people is key. We make all staff, including new hires, aware of their responsibilities in this area.

DHS ensures staff include child safety and protection all aspects of their work. Everyone must follow the:

Protection and support of children and young people is part of:

  • DHS screening processes
  • recruitment and selection
  • regular compliance reviews.

This is our responsibility as set out in the Child Safety (Prohibited Persons) Act 2016. It is one of the ways we support the provision of child-safe environments.

Mandated notifiers

Many of our staff are ‘mandated notifiers’. This means if they suspect risk or harm to a child or young person, which they identify while performing their duties with DHS, they must report it.

Receive this information in other formats

Documents provided here can be provided in other formats. Email us to request alternative formats.

Feedback and helplines

If you believe that someone working for DHS has broken the Working with Children and Young People Code of Conduct, you can send us feedback or complaints.

If you believe a child or young person is at risk of harm, phone the Child Abuse Report Line on 13 14 78.

You may also seek support from:

Legislative requirements

DHS is responsible for administering:

Safeguarding Policy

How we provide a safe environment for all children and young people.


Code of conduct

How our staff must conduct themselves, when working with children and young people.


Page last updated 31 August 2023